We are pleased to announce that we have extensively renovated our facility. Among the many improvements completed during the winter months of 2004 and the spring of 2005 is the addition of a wheelchair lift. This will provide easy access to our building for anyone with mobility issues.
The first floor restroom has been expanded and is now wheelchair accessible.
Our viewing rooms have been completely redesigned and include a powerful new central air conditioning and heating system.
These changes will add greater convenience and comfort for the families we serve and all who visit our facility. Please click the tour button above to view some of our improvements.
A special thank you to the many families who continued to allow us the privilege of providing service through the use of other facilities while our building was disrupted.
Our Open House held on Sunday, November 6, 2005 was very well attended and generated rave reviews of our remodeling and redecorating. We are very pleased and proud to be able to provide many improvements to our facilities and will continue to add more improvements in the near future.
What You Should Know Before Making Arrangements
Thoughtful Reflections from a Lifetime in Funeral Service
Licensed Funeral Director Since 1976
I grew up in a funeral home. My family and I lived upstairs all of my life, and I still live there. After many years of being a funeral director and assisting people with what is most often the worst time in their lives, here are some thoughts and ideas that I believe you may find both interesting and helpful.
Responding to a death.
When our lives are changed by the death of someone we care about, how we respond is usually influenced by several factors. Many of us have little or no previous experience with death, few if any skills for coping with loss, very little or sometimes no knowledge of options and the wisdom to guide our choices.
Loss is the great trigger mechanism that reconnects us with our loss history. There are many of us who have suppressed feelings associated with previous losses, or fears connected to our own mortality or that of someone we care about. These thoughts and feelings often cause us to develop attitudes that interfere with our decision-making abilities.
Every loss is unique. Our response should be equally unique and proportionate to the significance of the loss. Arranging an identical response each time a death occurs can result in a cookie-cutter experience that lacks meaning. If the arrangements do not provide comfort or value, it would be reasonable to question why anyone would choose to participate in such an empty exercise.
There is a better way.
A more thoughtful approach is to discuss a person’s life and the significance of the loss for survivors. This can result in choosing the type of arrangements that honor a person’s life while also respecting the needs of survivors. An effective and meaningful experience should touch the hearts of those who grieve. When this happens, the experience provides both value and purpose.
The importance of ceremony.
The idea that the arrangements selected should only be what the deceased person would have wanted is a common but mistaken idea. Our choices should also address the emotional, spiritual and adjustment needs of survivors. When making decisions, it is helpful to remember that ceremonies may be about the person who died but are also for those who have to live with the loss.
Yes, we should respect and honor any religious traditions of the deceased, but it is equally important to empower survivors to make decisions that will address the impact of the death. Their needs can vary dramatically due to unexpected circumstances involving the timing or manner in which a death occurs. Involvement in planning ceremonies can help us to become participants in the process of saying goodbye, not just spectators. It is always more meaningful to feel connected to an experience than to be a detached observer.
Discussing arrangements in advance.
Pre-arranged funeral plans should always include discussion and input from those who will have to live with the loss. If someone has made decisions that unintentionally interfere with or complicate the grieving process for survivors, the burden of such a conflict can and should be avoided. Often, a thorough discussion with an experienced funeral director results in greater knowledge of options to consider. Thoughtful choices can provide comfort and meaning, and it is meaning that gives your arrangements a sense of relevance for your family and friends.
Viewing can be a very important part of confronting and confirming the reality that a death has occurred. It is often a valuable vehicle for assisting survivors with transforming the basis of a relationship from one of presence to one that can now only exist in memories. Remember the old saying, “Seeing is believing"? Well, we may be able to readily accept the reality of a death at an intellectual level, but acceptance at a heart level is a much more complicated and life-long adjustment process. Viewing often provides the initial pathway for that process to begin.
Calling Hours - Wakes – Visitations
It is inconsistent with the best interest of a bereaved family to have to share a funeral home environment with another group of bereaved people whose emotional dynamics may be very different. One family may be confronted with a sudden or traumatic loss while another family is marking the end of a long life. The intermingling of such contrasting circumstances would be disrespectful to the needs of both families as well as the memory of their loved ones. It has been and shall remain the policy of Kelly Funeral Home to schedule only one wake at a time. The fact that we are able to hold more than one wake at the same time doesn't mean that we should. The time you spend in our funeral home is too important to your family for the environment to be compromised by any unnecessary distractions.
A death in the family creates feelings for children that also need to be acknowledged and validated. A parent’s first instinct may be to shield a child from loss and sadness, but we can’t protect our children from death, because death is part of life. Allow your children to participate in ceremonies if they wish to, but don't force them. There are a number of creative suggestions and materials we have available to assist adults with talking to children about loss.
Caskets and Other Merchandise
Simply put, spending more money on a fancy casket or any other funeral-industry products does not increase the value of a funeral; it just increases the overall cost. Many products have been developed in recent years that target the heartstrings of grieving people. Purchasing all the trinkets in the world will not compensate for a ceremony that does not touch the heart. Overspending will not address issues of guilt or regret nor will it ensure your loved one will rest in peace. Attaching too much significance to a piece of merchandise can be a misplaced response to the emotional pain of separation.
We mark most important events in life with ceremony. It is also true that meaningful ceremonies help us begin to absorb losses into the fabric of our lives and accept change as part of the journey.
When Getting It Right Matters.
Kelly Funeral Home and Bereavement Care Center
154 Lincoln Street - Worcester, MA 01605-3741
"Striving for Perfection, Earning Your Trust”
James B. Kelly & Staff
Phone: 508-755-4507 or Toll Free: 800-660-4507